June 7, 2006: Canada put in a rush order for 25 more Nyala armored vehicles for its 2,300 troops in Afghanistan. The Nyala is a South African vehicles, costing about $1.1 million each, that was designed to resist landmines and roadside bombs. It was developed from the earlier Mamba armored personnel carrier, and has an excellent track record. The wheeled (4x4) vehicle weighs eight tons and can carry up to eleven people. The model Canada is getting (RG-31M), usually¬† operates with a crew of five, plus a cargo area in the back. Before Canada bought 50 Nyala vehicles earlier this year, the UN and the United States were the major users of the vehicle. Although armed only with a .50 caliber machine-gun, the Nyala earns its way by being the first one down roads where mines or roadside bombs may be encountered. The Nyala is becoming popular with NGOs operating in dangerous areas, as it does not look particularly military (especially if the machine-gun is removed), even through it is definitely a combat ready vehicle. In Afghanistan, Canadian troops have encountered increased Taliban use of roadside bombs, and suicide car bombers.